Sometimes there are moments in parenting that I find leave me feeling like I"m stuck in a comic strip. You know the type. The ones where the adult is left shaking their head, and with a large speach bubble over their head, filled with question marks. The ones where logic and reason no longer prevail, and all you can do is sit back and enjoy the ride?
Had one of those last night!
So as E has finally gotten completely entrenched in toddlerhood, our evening routines have changed. The weather is nicer and more time is spent outside. Pretty much all time is spent outside, from after daycare, until dinner, bath and bed time. E races through bath, and runs, full of more energy than I think I've had in the past 5 YEARS of my life, through the house and up the stairs. Bouncing, and yelling, running, and hollering, saying "BYE" to everything and anything that will listen. And sometimes, even to things that won't listen. We've finally replace the rocking chair with a cozy upholstered chair, so that after changed for bed, E and I can snuggle down, and in the last dim light of Spring, we read stories together. She's still just getting there, patient enough to do it. Sometimes too impatient to sit still for it. But I can see the change of a phase. The time of rocking her into slumber is gone. The time of enjoying those 15 - 30 mins of Mommy and Daughter snuggling, although small, is precious. And then, a usually WIDE awake, bouncing about E, is popped into her crib. Where she works it out in her own time. And goes to sleep.
Last night was like all other nights, right up until popping her into the crib, giving her good night kisses, and leaving the room to the sounds of her nightly protest over bed time. But by the time I got downstairs it had already softened, and as I sat outside with Daddy, beneath her window, we heard no tears. So we declared bed time a success. After a few quiet moments outside, planting plants in our pots, as we discussed the events of the day, and the plans for the weeks to come, we headed back inside. The house was peacefully quiet. You know... the way it only can on a spring or summer evening. With dusk leaving the house in an quiet darkness. Out of habit, more than need, I took a peak at the video baby monitor. And... much to my dismay... the silence was THOROUGHLY misleading.
E was NOT asleep. E was laying in her crib, appearing to count sheep. Which in itself wouldn't be a bad thing. The strange thing was her missing pajamas. Laying in her crib, babbling to herself, trying to pull the blankets on herself. From all accounts (Daddy's and mine), it looked like she regretted the decision to disrobe and was trying to warm herself up.
So upstairs we trudged, and back into PJs she went. And back downstairs we went. She seemed to think this was a good choice. She stayed in them this time, and resumed her count of sheep. And finally, close to 9 PM, the little voice stopped, and our toddler drifted off into dreamland.
Being a parent is sweet. But sometimes it just leaves you with a big QUESTION MARK?